2011 Palestinian protests

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2011 Palestinian protests were a series of protests in the Palestinian National Authority and the Hamas ruled Gaza Strip, staged by various Palestinian groups as part of the wider Arab Spring. The protests were aimed at the Palestinian government, as well as supporting the popular uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Syria.

Goals[edit]

The goal of the early protests were to unify the two ruling parties, Fatah and Hamas. Other reasons included unemployment, inflation, and lack of economic growth.

Protests timeline[edit]

February 2011[edit]

The Palestinian Authority prevented several demonstrations in support of protesters in Tunisia and Egypt. On 3 February, Palestinian police dispersed an anti-Mubarak demonstration in downtown Ramallah, detaining four people, confiscating a cameraman's footage, and reportedly beating protesters. A smaller pro-Mubarak demonstration was permitted to take place in the same area and was guarded by police.[1]

October 2011[edit]

On 15 October, an anti-Assad protest expressing solidarity with Palestinian refugees in Syria affected by the unrest there took place in the Gaza Strip, and was attended by 150 people. Hamas police forces dispersed the demonstration, claiming that it was held without a permit.[2]

February 2012[edit]

On 1 February 2012 the Palestinian Authority announced that it would hold municipal elections in July. Some sources speculated that this announcement was a reaction to the anti-government protests in Egypt. The elections were however postponed to 22 October, then suspended indefinitely due to an internal division within the Palestinian Authority over candidates for many of the municipalities and councils, and fears that Hamas supporters would back Palestinian Authority opponents.[3] On 14 February, amid pan-Arab calls for reform, Palestinian Authority Prime Minister Salam Fayyad submitted his resignation along with that of his cabinet to President Mahmoud Abbas.[4] After consultations with other factions, institutions, and civil society groups, Abbas asked him to form a new government.[5] The reshuffle had long been demanded by Fayyad as well as members of Abbas's Fatah faction.[5]

Palestinian role in the Syrian civil war[edit]

Five Palestinian refugees were killed and several were wounded on 5 August 2011 at dawn during clashes took place in Homa refugee camp, central Syria.[6] Witnesses told that dozens of Palestinian families left the camp toward the city of Halab due to the ongoing bombing in the vicinity of the camp.[6] Noting that groups of masked men riding motorcycles near Alaostard attempted to fire bullets to drag Palestinians into the clashes.[6] Palestinians who fled from the camp said that a committee was formed to protect Palestinian refugees in Syria from being attacked till their return to their home country and to avoid them from the current clashes.[6]

Outcome[edit]

In response to early protests, the two ruling parties of Fatah and Hamas signed a unity deal in Cairo, later ratified in Doha (2012), though its actual implementation has stalled. In May 2012, Palestinian factions began moves to implement the Cairo accords and prepare the grounds for joint elections in the Palestinian Authority and the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

The Egyptian Revolution resulted in the Egyptian government lifting its blockade on Gaza.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "PA bans anti-Mubarak protest". Ynetnews.com. 20 June 1995. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  2. ^ Issacharoff, Avi. "Hamas disperses anti-Assad protest in Gaza". Haaretz Daily Newspaper. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  3. ^ "Palestinian local elections postponed". Ynetnews.com. 20 June 1995. Retrieved 2012-01-20. 
  4. ^ "Unrest in the Middle East and North Africa – country by country". CNN. 18 February 2011. 
  5. ^ a b "Palestinian cabinet resigns". Al Jazeera English. 14 February 2011. Retrieved 19 February 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c d [1]